Monday, June 04, 2007

Not At That Price Larry

This week Larry tells us that the Caps are "presumably" interested in reacquiring Michael Nylander over the UFA market this summer. Ol' Lar tells us that Nylander's "market value" is $4.5 million over three to four years.

Does this guy pay any attention? Why would the Caps give a 3-4 contract to Michael Nylander to center A.O. when they wouldn't give Dainius Zubrus (who will be 29) a long term contract, why are they going to give Michael Nylander more $$$$$ for a similar term?

And did you see that Nylander is 35 already? That means his contract sticks with the Caps for salary cap purposes until it runs its natural course. So if Nylander gets injured, he stays on our cap; if he gets demoted for poor play, it stays on our cap; if he decides to retire after one season, it stays on our cap and the Caps are left with what is known as "Dead Cap Space."

The Redskins specialize in Dead Cap Space and it limits their ability to make moves to improve the team. Ted Leonsis has used the term "cap jail" and has said more than once that the Caps are going to avoid deals that will land them in "cap jail." How Larry is unaware of this is beyond me. Of course, expect over the next few months for Larry to complain about how the Caps aren't near the salary floor despite already being well over it...

Now does this mean that the Caps will avoid all UFAs 35 and over like Nylander? I don't think so, but I would be shocked to see the Caps give any UFA 35 and over a contract longer than 2 years. As for Nylander himself, don't forget that he was injured for much of the 2003-2004 season (he played only three games for us) before we shipped him off the Boston at the deadline as a part of the firesale. While he would certainly provide help to the team, he doesn't have a long term future for us so I hope the Caps pass on him.

However, giving him a four year contract has "Alexander Mogilny" written all over it. Let somebody else make that mistake. We're going to need a lot of $$$$$ to keep our free agents next year, so let's not tie it up into dead cap space.



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